Released: March 25, 2014
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: Harlequin MIRA
Reviewed by Sarah
On the flap: Home is where her heart is...
When Presley Christensen returns to Whiskey Creek with her little boy after two years away, she has completely changed her life. She's made peace with her past and overcome the negative behavior that resulted from her difficult childhood. Now she's back in the small town that was the closest thing to "home" she ever knew—the town where she can be with the sister who's her only family.
There's just one catch. Aaron Amos still lives in Whiskey Creek, at least until he moves to Reno to open a branch of the Amos brothers' auto body shop. And no matter how hard she's tried, Presley hasn't been able to get over him. Seeing him again makes the longing so much worse. But she hopes she can get through the next few months, because she can't fall back into his arms…or his bed. She's come too far to backslide now. And there's a secret she's been guarding—a secret she'll do anything to protect.
Presley Christensen left Whiskey Creek a couple of years ago after her mom passed and then ultimately being rejected. She was in a bad place in life; self-destructive and abusing drugs. Then she found out she was pregnant and decided to change everything and try to improve her life and that of her child. She worked while going to school and now wants to open her own busy. She’s resolved to open a yoga/massage studio in her hometown and especially since her unrequited love will be leaving town.
Aaron Amos is a bit of a lady’s man and still a bit of a partier although it has tapered in the past couple of years. Even with his less desirable traits, he is a champion for the underdog and those on the outside. It was a large part of the reason he befriended Presley originally. Now he focus is more on work and specifically opening a franchise in Fresno where he’ll be moving in just a few months.
This is a story about second chances. Presley has always had a tough life, from trying to find shelter and food as a child, to her drug abuse, and now trying to raise a child on her own. She has to learn how to forgive herself and to begin to trust people again particularly those who have disappointed her. Want Aaron is her Achilles’ heel. She hasn’t heard from him since she left and has also ensured he doesn’t know he’s the father of her child. When she returns to town he suddenly feel proprietary over her and wants to hook up like they did before although Presley doesn’t to, not because she doesn’t want him but doesn’t want the one-sided emotions where she’ll ultimately be left alone.
There is a large presence of secondary characters, mostly Cheyenne (Presley’s sister) and Dylan (Aaron’s brother) who are married to each other. While I haven’t read Cheyenne and Dylan’s story, it seems their love and connection has been based on truth until now. She has kept Presley’s secret begrudgingly but now creates one of her own and perhaps worse. Although done with intentions of love, her deception could arguably be worse. I suspect the duplicities of the three will return with consequences in a future Whiskey Creek novel otherwise I’m not sure why it held a considerable amount of this plot line. Even if you don’t agree with the subplot, the story could have become whiny when in reality it’s an intense look at emotions, disappoints, and how to move past them.
Rating: 4 Stars
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I have a large appetite for books with pensive alpha males. I tend to lean towards erotica and contemporary romance. I am completely addicted to my Kindle and feel naked when it’s not with me. If you have any recommendations, feel free to email them. I’m a single-ish woman with two crazy dogs. I also love football and basketball. Living in Oklahoma City, my teams are the Thunder and Sooners.